EBRD issues loan for Georgian pharmaceutical sector
Azerbaijan, Baku, Sept. 22 / Trend , G.Dadashova /
The EBRD is helping to boost competition in the Georgian pharmaceutical market with a loan of US$ 4 million to ABC Pharmacia, the country's fourth largest distributor of pharmaceutical goods, the Bank reported.
The company has been growing steadily since it was established in 1999 and it currently manages 35 pharmacies. It will use the loan to expand its reach further into the country and aims to be able to serve customers throughout the whole of Georgia by the end of 2012.
This will increase ABC Pharmacia's competitiveness in a market that is currently dominated by just two enterprises.
The expansion will include the establishment of another 21 PharmaDepot and 19 M'curnali pharmacies, ABC Pharmacia's well-recognised brands.
The financing, provided under the EBRD Medium-Sized Co-Financing Facility (MCFF) through the local JSC TBC Bank, will be used to buy product stock, store hardware and software, and to cover other start-up costs such as initial monthly salaries. The new ABC Pharmacia stores are expected to create 200 jobs across Georgia.
During the expansion phase, the company will be assisted by consultants from the EBRD donor-funded TurnAround Management (TAM) Programme. They will cooperate with the company to further improve the management of the retail network, logistics, risk control and marketing activities.
In addition, the EBRD is helping ABC Pharmacia to become more competitive in the international market by implementing financial statements consistent with the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). It is planned that the company will get assistance through the new Accounting Improvement Programme (AIP).
"The Bank developed this Program to improve financial reporting of small and medium-sized enterprises in the early transition countries," explains Chris Clubb, EBRD Director of the Early Transition Countries Initiative (ETCI). "Better financial information will not only help small and medium-sized enterprises make confident development plans but also facilitate obtaining loans from financial institutions".